(A 117-page True Crime Short with photographs) Between 1968 and 1985, a monstrous serial killer stalked the picturesque countryside around Florence, shooting and mutilating eight couples on moonless nights. The desecration of the women’s bodies was a scene beyond the wildest imaginations of movie scriptwriters.
Murder on the New Moon tells the exceptionally bizarre and twisted tale about a city gripped by fear, dozens of suspects, a string of charges and convictions followed by embarrassing acquittals and pardons, and an ever-raging whirlpool of theories, rumors and conspiracy that still divides Italians today. The anonymous assailant, called The Monster of Florence or Il Mostro di Firenze, commands an enduring mystery which includes all the hallmarks and enduring intrigue of Jack the Ripper.
Most disturbing of all, he may still be at large…
After a quarter of a century of failure, only a brave detective takes the plunge back into the impossibly murky waters of this uniquely baffling case. The politics, egos, rivalries, and conspiracy theories that hampered each investigation still overshadow his new search for the killer.
The investigation also links to the 2008 murder of British student Meredith Kercher, for which American student Amanda Knox and her then-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito were convicted and then freed. The same Perugian judge who propagated outlandish theories of Satanic sex rituals in that case also used such ultimately baseless hypotheses to falsely accuse many prominent Italians of these serial killings, and even threatened to arrest an American writer planning a book on the case.
The story once more proves the old adage that truth is stranger than fiction. Indeed, the story is currently being made into a major Hollywood movie, The Monster of Florence, starring George Clooney, scheduled for a 2013 release.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Johnny Sharp is a British investigative journalist who covers music and sports. He is a regular contributor to The Guardian and The Independent newspapers and to BBC Online. He first became interested in the Italian serial killer case while traveling in Italy in the late 1980s, and has since followed the seemingly never-ending investigation for more than 20 years.